April 01, 2003
Please Hear What I Am Not Saying by Author Unknown

Don't be fooled by me...Don't be fooled by the face I wear. For I wear a mask. I wear a thousand masks, masks that I'm afraid to take off...and none of them are me. Pretending is an art that is second nature with me....but don't be fooled...for god's sake, don't be fooled...

I give you the impression that I'm secure, that all is sunny and unruffled with me, within as well as without, confidence is my name and coolness is my game, and that the water's calm and I'm in command, and that I need no one...But don't believe me.....Please Don't......

My surface may seem smooth, but my surface is my mask.....my cover, my ever Beneath dwells the real me....in confusion...in fear... in aloneness.....but I hide this.....I don't want anyone to know it....I panic at the thought of my weakness, and I fear being exposed....That's why I frantically create a mask to hide behind....a nonchalant sophisticated facade....to help me pretend.....to shield me from the glance that knows.

But such a glance is precisely my salvation....my only salvation....And I know it.....that is, if that glance is followed by acceptance.....and if it's followed by love.....It's only acceptance and love that can liberate me....from myself....from my own self-built prison walls, from the barriers that I so painstakingly construct.

It's the only thing that will assure me of what I can't assure myself, that I'm really worth something....But I don't tell you this...I don't dare...I'm afraid to...I'm afraid you will think less of me, and that you'll laugh...and that would kill me...I'm afraid your glance will not be followed by acceptance and love....I'm afraid that deep down I'm nothing, that I'm just no good, and that you will see this and reject me....So I play my game, my desperate, pretending game, with a facade of assurance on the outside, and a trembling child within...And so begins the parade of masks.....and my life becomes a front.

I idly chatter to you in the suave tones of surface talk. I tell you everything that's really nothing, and nothing of that which is everything, of what's crying within me....So when I'm going through my routine, do not be fooled by what I'm saying.....please listen carefully and try to hear what I'm NOT saying, what I'd like to be able to say....what, for survival I need to say....But I CAN'T SAY....

I dislike hiding....Honestly I do....I dislike the superficial phony game...I'd really like to be genuine and spontaneous, and me....but you've got to help me...you've got to hold out you hand even when that's the last thing I seem to want or need.....Only you can wipe away from my eyes the blank stare of the breathing dead.

Only you can call me into aliveness...Each time you're kind and gentle and encouraging, each time you try to understand because you really care, my heart begins to grow wings....very small wings.....very feeble wings....but wings..... with your sensitivity and sympathy and your power of understanding....you can breathe life into me....and I want you to know how important you are to me.....how you can be a creator of the person that is me....If you choose to...PLEASE CHOOSE TO....You can break down the wall behind which I tremble.....you alone can pass me by......PLEASE DON´T......

It will not be easy for you. A long conviction of worthlessness builds strong walls. The nearer you approach me, the blinder I strike back. It's irrational, but despite what books say about man, I am irrational....I fight against the very things I cry out for.

But I am told that love is stronger than strong walls, and in this lies hope...my only hope...PLEASE try to beat down those walls with firm hands....But with gentle hands....for a child is very sensitive.

Posted by Deirdre at April 01, 2003 01:39 PM

Thankyou its a wonderful honest piece of writing, really hits the nail on the head, so scary to read too, its so true it hurts.
God Bless love ti

Posted by: ti on April 1, 2003 02:31 PM

So true.
Wonderful piece. Can see me in so much of it.
Thank you, beautifully written.
Love Anna

Posted by: Anna on April 1, 2003 05:12 PM

God, how we can all relate so well to this.

Amanda, you have the gift of authorship, don't abuse it by leaving it to lie dormant.

Someday your heart will open up!

Posted by: Hanora Brennan on April 3, 2003 06:52 PM

hi hanora...just wanted to say that i didnt actually write this piece!....really like it though, its great. so true to life, and really touching

Posted by: Amanda on April 3, 2003 09:33 PM

Its a sad fact that many of us have had to live behind a facade, construct another ME, to hide the pain away, because few will listen or do not want to know. we have had to protect ourselves. but we now live in liberating times. i can now tell you about my masks. i am no longer ashamed of them, i am proud of them, and the person behind them who struggled to survive. this is one the destuctive effects of abuse, and a reflection of the shameful eticate led society, we live in, which causes us to bury our feelings. the wall of silence is blowing away. it takes a fanastic emount of Energy to create these masks, and keep them in place, i am now learning how to redirect this energy into being me, and facing the torturous pain of sexual and physical abuse. i was abused for 4000 days, and hit by my gene donors at least 60000 times. they did break me, but i am gradually putting myself back together again. the masks have kept me safe until this day. love

Posted by: eleanor rigby on April 4, 2003 07:25 PM
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